McThoughts|Women’s East Nationals|Ulverton Round 2
By Jeff McConkey
Photos by Bigwave
Round 2 of the Women’s East Nationals went off on Saturday in Ulverton, Quebec. I have been a supporter of the women on both coasts since the start, but this was by far the best racing I have seen, yet. The class is stacked and we have seen some awesome racing in the first 4 motos, and it looks to be heating up. We have a defending champ, a former champ, and a few future champs. The track was fast and rough, like always, and there was lots of passing. Unfortunately, the 2nd moto was way behind due to a scary crash involving a few riders in the preceding moto. The Women were held on the line for quite some time (1 1/2 hours), and I’m sure it affected a few of them. Eventually, things got going, but we all hope the riders involved will be OK. Let’s take a look at the results and see my thoughts:
1st Eve Brodeur (1-1): Eve, once again, rode great. Her starts are fantastic and her bike sounds great. She hasn’t done anything wrong yet this season, and I don’t see her starting now. She is so calm and confident at such a young age, it’s scary. I just wish we had someone to push her a little more so we can see an even better Eve.
2nd Brittany Gagne (4-2): Brittany had a solid first moto, but her start killed her. The top girls are too good to be spotting head starts. In moto 2, she started 3rd and had an amazing battle with Shannon Fleming for the entire moto. Brittany just needed a little confidence, and now that she has it, she expects to be up here every week, which is bad news for her competitors.
3rd Shannon Fleming (3-3): Shannon rode great and had a dog fight for the entire second moto. She seemed a little pissed about her results and I like it; she works hard and wants to win. She has the speed to be on the podium and challenge for podiums. I think now that she has 2 rounds under her belt, she will come back after the break and be even harder to beat.
4th Jacqueline Ross (2-4): Jacqueline had a really good first moto. Her starts have been very good. I don’t know what happened, but she went backwards in moto 2. That’s not like J-Ro, and I expect her to be back stronger after the break.
5th Kassie Boone (6-7): Kassie was a little off the pace, but still got a nice top 5 o/a. She stalled off the start in the first moto and really had to work hard to get in the mix, but by then the fast girls were long gone. I think she will shine at the more technical Deschambault and RJ’s tracks. She has too much talent not to be on the podium.
6th Kim Normandin (5-8): Kim came into Round 2 with a right wrist injury. She rode well despite not being able to hang on. Kim sits 5th overall in points after 2 rounds and will look to bounce back at Deschambault.
7th Isabelle Thibault (8-6): This girl impresses me every moto. In moto 1, she had a terrible start and made it all of the way to 8th. Her second moto start was much better and she had a great ride for 6th. Very impressed with the #192 of Thibault.
8th Megan Brodeur (12-5): Megan rocketed off the start in moto 1. She looked great early on until she hit a downed rider. A little banged up in moto 2 and she rode to a solid 5th. During the off season, Megan races snowcross, so she doesn’t have time to train on the bike. She’s only 16 and the sky is the limit for her. Just imagine if she could spend the winter training for moto!
9th Madi Seguin (7-10): Madi had another sneaky good weekend. She comes in under the radar and just gets it done. I think she is still adjusting to the 4-stroke, but it’s a good change.
10th Robin Hutchinson (9-9): Robin had 2 solid motos. Her set up is on point each and every moto and we should not see her outside of the top 10.
Biggest Stud: How can you not pick Eve Brodeur. She is dominating every moto and having fun. I also love the fact that she isn’t afraid to try and qualify with the boys in MX2 on Sunday. The only knock I have against Eve is she was worried about being in the way too much in qualifying at Gopher Dunes. You have every right to be out there, so have fun and ride your race. You will get in sooner than you think.
Biggest Dud: No Dud this week. We had 39 girls line up and there were great races throughout the pack.
Biggest Surprise: I’m super Dungey pumped with Isabelle Thibault. This girl always has a huge smile on her face and she isn’t afraid to twist the throttle. I’m definitely a fan of her style.
Thanks for reading and I’ll see you at Deschambault.